From our Bureau of Lingering Enthusiasm for Travel to Latrine American Totalitarian Hellholes
“Dream holiday” seekers continue to flock to Castrogonia, but their numbers continue to shrink. Apartheid hotels and resorts aren’t affected by any shortages, but those foolhardy tourists who choose to stay in private homes do have to contend with some of the inconveniences of daily life experienced by Cubans.
Some of these dolts apparently put up with the inconveniences as a “learning experience,” but the vast majority of tourists still prefer the apartheid life style.
Granma Euro-Lite (Reuters) has published an upbeat article that focuses on this aspect of Castro, Inc.’s moribund tourist industry. See excerpt below.
British birdwatcher Harriet Babeo arrived at Cuba’s Bay of Pigs earlier this week and promptly racked up 80 species for her list including the world’s smallest hummingbird and the elusive red, white and blue Cuban trogon, rarities found only the island.
Far more challenging, she told Reuters, was hunting down a few liters of gasoline for her group’s rental car.
“We’ve gone … three days now, and (the service stations) have had nothing,” Babeo said over breakfast, binoculars and bird book near at hand, at a private home-stay on Cuba’s serene Bay of Pigs.
Tourists like Babeo who spoke with Reuters often raved about their experience in Cuba, praising the country’s hospitality, culture and weather. But increasingly, says Paolo Spadoni, an economist with Augusta University, visitors must confront the realities of Cuba’s economic crisis – the worst in decades – an ominous headwind as the country struggles to breathe new life into its all-important tourism sector.
“If you see how slow the recovery of the Cuban tourism sector is compared to other countries, it tells you there are deeper problems,” Spadoni said.
Cuba in 2022 received 1.6 million visitors, just 38% of the 4.3 million who traveled to the island in 2019, prior to the pandemic. Neighboring Dominican Republic, meanwhile, saw 7.2 million visitors in 2022, up 11.1% over 2019.
Collin Laverty, founder of Cuba Educational Travel (CET), said flexibility is a hallmark of travel to Cuba.
“I always tell travelers there’s definitely a challenging situation on the ground, shortages, inflation, and you’ll experience those things, and you should, because that’s part of going to a country and learning about the reality,” he said.
And for those not interested in roughing it, there are other options, he told Reuters.
“There’s certainly nice hotels with strong internet, bathrooms with toilet paper, and nice restaurants,” Laverty said. “You can see the challenges but you don’t necessarily have to live them first hand as travelers.”
Whole story HERE